Storing breast milk helps moms use excess breast milk later, and also helps other family members in taking over some feeding duties. Here are the simple do’s and don’ts of storing breast milk.
The proper storage of breast milk is a really big concern for all mothers, whether you are a working mother or producing more milk than the baby’s requirement or unable to feed your baby due to certain issues like sore or cracked nipples. So this post on storing breast milk is especially meant for moms who have little or no information regarding expressed milk storage. There are certain Do’s and Don’ts that should be taken care of, when storing breast milk.
Storing breast milk: Do’s
- Maintaining proper hygiene is the most important thing before expressing your milk. Always wash your hands and wipe with a clean towel. Wash your bottles properly and sterlize them in a bottle sterilizer.
- You can use either a manual pump or an electric pump, whichever is convenient to you. Wash and sterilize each and every part properly.
- Clean your nipples with warm water to avoid any impurity.
- Immediately refrigerate the expressed milk. You can store your milk for 24 hours. If you have frequent power cuts or cooling issues, storage shouldn’t be for more than 4-5 hours.
- Before feeding refrigerated milk to your baby, always keep the bottle in warm water till it attains room temperature.
- Always label the bottle with dates so that you can use the previous day bottles first and also, it can help other family members to feed your baby in your absence.
Storing breast milk: Dont’s
- Never use disposable or normal plastic containers. Use BPA free bottles for storage.
- Never reuse the stored milk. Once warmed, discard the remaining milk after feeding your baby.
- Never keep the expressed milk in the open. Immediately after expressing, cover the container with lid and refrigerate it.
- Never heat the milk over gas or in microwave as it may destroy the essential nutrients of milk.
These simple tips for storage of breast milk will help you in making use of excess milk, or feeding breast milk as per your convenience.
First published here.